By Maria Rocha-Buschel
Joseph LoMenzo, an original tenant of Stuyvesant Town and a longtime officer at the 13th Precinct, died in Fort Myers, Florida this past Tuesday. His death came on the heels of celebrating a huge milestone for LoMenzo: his 100th birthday.
“He had this adrenaline and at all the parties, he was really energetic,” his oldest son Roger told Town & Village. “He really stuck it out.”
Just last month, Roger had accepted a plaque on his father’s behalf from officers at the 13th Precinct at the March Community Council meeting honoring this milestone. Of his father’s many years of service with the NYPD, most were spent at the 13th Precinct.
Having lived through the last century, and in New York for more than half of his life, LoMenzo had a unique perspective on the city from that time. When he was growing up in the Bronx, he watched Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth play ball in Yankee Stadium, witnessed the Hindenburg fly over the city prior to its explosion in New Jersey and spotted President Franklin Roosevelt in a casually sitting in a town car.
LoMenzo, who originally joined the NYPD while living in the Bronx, served in the military during World War II and when he was discharged from the army in 1946, he rejoined the NYPD at the 13th precinct. He had heard that Stuyvesant Town was being built so he put an application in for an apartment, to move closer to the neighborhood than the Bronx.